Dissident Ivan Nikolayevich – A Sputnik Poem


                                                                                      “Schizophrenia, as predicted”
                                                                                      – Mikhail Bulgakov

Sputnik tells:

They claimed
that Ivan Nikolayevich had stolen
from the community fund.
They wanted to get rid of him
and send him away
because he had criticized the MASSOLIT.

The MASSOLIT said:
“It would be the very best
if he got a sentence, preferably hard labour
then he could no longer cheat people
with his clean criminal record.”
But Ivan Nikolayevich had not stolen anything.

By giving him a sentence,
he would never be able to
appear decent,
truthful and trustworthy.

But it can be proved:
Ivan Nikolayevich was clean and innocent,
white as a Siberian winter,
as far as the eye could reach the expanses of truth.

Then the MASSOLIT claimed that
Ivan Nikolayevich was suffering
from sluggish schizophrenia.
“We must get him out of the way,
We will call The Serbsky Center, ”
the MASSOLIT said.

The MASSOLIT sent out a press release
where they revealed: “It’s schizophrenia” –
Ivan Nikolayevich was done as a dissident and
truth teller. The case was closed.

Ivan Nikolayevich was no longer worthy of any office or job.
He was forced to retire.
Never again would Ivan Nikolayevich criticize
anything or anybody.
He had to stay marginalized.

Ivan Nikolayevich was forced into hospital.
An old deaf doctor looked at him
and shed the verdict: “Schizophrenia,
as predicted”.

The judgment was harder
than a prison sentence,
because he could later
neither be released nor pardoned.
The judgment stuck to him for the rest of his life.

Ivan Nikolayevich should have stopped his critique
and instead have written something innocent and edifying.

Something loyal and patriotic.
Ivan Nikolayevich should have seen a beauty in the corn fields,
communism and the Bolshevik revolution.
Written about the industrial wonders,
the pure mind of the workers,
maybe even about Sovjet love
with his heart’s red blood.

Now Ivan Nikolayevich ended up
as a forgotten critic and dissident,
made harmless by health-damaging psychotropic drugs
in The Serbsky Center in Moskow.

A plug from the loyal psychiatrist:
A syringe with depot medicine.
The MASSOLIT was satisfied.
Ivan Nikolayevich floated out into outer space
from an utopian society, as a kosmonaut
relieved from the total equality.

Ivan Nikolayevich had become an angel,
a snowflake in the wind of the universe,
who whispered truths
into the ear canals of well-known people.

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